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  • 01/13/2021 5:06 AM | Megan Avery (Administrator)

    According to Etsy, 2021 will be about creating connections to each other, to ourselves, to nature. To read their full prediction, head over here.

    They predict people will be embracing “friluftsliv”, the Norweigan concept of getting outdoors – think of it as the new hygge.

    They also predict that prioritizing connections to small businesses around the world will be in the forefront. They foresee shoppers putting their money where their hearts are.

    From our color of the year to new everyday trends, Etsy is confident that shoppers will be finding ways to create connections, big and small, more than ever this year.

    Color of the Year Etsy Prediction: Sky blue
    Home & Living Etsy Prediction: Reimagining spaces
    Weddings Etsy Prediction: Anniversary receptions
    Style Etsy Predictions: At-home wear 2.0
    Kids Etsy Prediction: Outer space 

  • 01/01/2021 5:03 PM | Megan Avery (Administrator)

    How did women achieve a bell-shaped silhouette in the mid-19th century? By wearing many, many layers of undergarments!

    This video program was recorded on December 16, 2020 and featured Illinois State Museum Curator of History Erika Holst discussing Victorian undergarments and the proper order in which they were worn.

    Watch the video presentation here.

  • 01/01/2021 4:01 PM | Megan Avery (Administrator)

    Find your next fabric supplier from hundreds of international manufacturers offering a wide range of product category spectrum, from Cotton to Yarns.  

    Texworld New York City (formerly known as Texworld USA) is an international business platform to source fabric and materials for fashion. The largest sourcing event on the East Coast hosts global suppliers, fabric buyers, designers, and fashion professionals for 3 days of sourcing, learning and networking. 

    Winter 2021 Edition – now all digital!


  • 12/09/2020 8:45 AM | Megan Avery (Administrator)

    Jody Bailey Kinard Tree skirt 

    Jody Kinard, of JK Creations, in Loma Linda California: This was a pair of pants that belonged to my client's grandpa. They now have a new life as a Christmas tree skirt. Visit Jody online at http://www.jkcreations.com

    Bonny Carmincino, XOX (Scarf 42)

    Bonny Carmincino, founder of Way of the Thread, and  ASDP President:  Here is one of my knitting patterns, XOX (Scarf 42), knit to a large scale.  It is incredibly cozy to snuggle in while reading a favorite book!  The pattern is available in my Ravelry shop. 


    Loesje Shema Stocking Advent Calendar

    Pat Billups Top Coat


    Tina Crockett Quilt


  • 12/03/2020 5:00 PM | Jennifer Phillips (Administrator)

    Years ago I participated in a research opportunity with a group that was working on software to bridge the gap between 3D body scanning and custom digital patterns. I was intrigued with the idea so I volunteered to stand in my skivvies for about a minute while the hardware captured thousands of data points. When the project was shut down, I was able to talk with some of the developers about their thoughts. The failure of the project centered around the software not being able to account for “noise”. Errant or missing data points, and distortion around body areas that touch caused the pattern software to have significant deviations from sizing standards that had to be reconciled by an experienced pattern drafter. The time and technical knowledge needed couldn't be supported under their pricing model.

    Since the early 90’s retailers have hailed ‘Mass Customization’ as the next revolution in fashion. Levi’s, Lands’ End and Brooks Brothers were some of the early adopters in this type of technology-setting up 3D scanners in store and allowing customers to order made-to-measure versions of their current styles. While the high cost of adopting new tech and development hiccups were a factor; overcoming customer behavior patterns is the greatest hurdle. While widely adopted mass-customization has not been the radical disruption that was predicted, the fashion world is being transformed by advances in technology.

    3DLook is one of the companies providing a platform to collect body measurements. Far from the bulky 3D full body scanners, their software allows measurements to be quickly and easily captured using a camera phone. SAIA-Scanning AI for Apparel, uses customer inputs: gender, height, weight, and 2 photos. This complex technology combines computer vision and machine learning to analyze the 2D images, locate body landmarks, and generate highly accurate predictions of 3 dimensional information. One of the solutions that 3DLook offers is Mobile Tailor geared towards made-to-measure and custom-fit businesses.

    With safety concerns and the constantly changing business restrictions because of Covid, I was immediately intrigued with the possibilities presented by this new technology. I signed up for a trial to see how it worked. During the two week free trial, you are allowed 10 scans. While getting familiar with the online dashboard they allow you to practice and scan yourself without counting against the allotment. I found the platform easy to use: the interface allows you to send the measurement link to a customer through email or text, and the dashboard keeps track of the status of the measurement requests you have sent. During the trial you get the chance to check out the 3D avatar feature that is available in their higher level plans.

    To test using this tech I accepted a custom project for a birthday dress for the daughter of a current client. Liz would be celebrating her 13th birthday at home and wanted an outfit that was low key but special. Everything for this project was done without meeting with Liz in person. After discussing with Liz and her mom what they were envisioning, I sent them a sketch and a link from Mobile Tailor. Using her measurements, I drafted the dress from a basic sheath pattern and combined flat pattern work and draping for the bodice detail and peplum. I dropped off the completed dress with high hopes but also assured them I would guide them through marking any alterations that might be needed. 

    The outcome for this project was better than I hoped for, and my clients were thrilled to have a custom fit garment in the middle of a statewide lockdown. There were several factors that contributed to the success; the design was a fairly classic silhouette and we chose a ponte knit fabric that lent an additional amount of flexibility in the fit.

    This technology is not likely to completely remove the manual measurements and fittings from my design process; interactions between body shapes, pattern shapes, and fabric properties will cause fitting issues that will need to be addressed. But I love that I have access to it when needed.

    I invite ASDP members to read more about Mobile Tailor and sign up for a trial to see the technology at work. At the scale that many sewing professionals operate, even the Starter Plan-$99/month for up to 50 scans is likely not a reasonable expense. But 3DLook does want to extend the technology to small businesses with an option that isn’t listed on the website. After going through the trial, ASDP members can email to request pay-per-scan billing and pay a flat rate of $5 per scan. Opting into the per scan pricing doesn’t give you access to the 3D avatar nor are you able to embed the software as a widget within your website.

    I’d love to hear your thoughts about this interesting advance in technology or about your experience with a Mobile Tailor trial! Share your comments below or reach out to me in the Discuss List(ASDP members only),  ASDP Facebook group or through email.

    Jennifer Phillips is a designer in Portland, OR who specializes in custom bridal, special event and performance wear. Jennifer is currently serving as the VP of Membership in ASDP. Follow on Instagram @nicolebridalpdx 


  • 12/02/2020 9:10 AM | Megan Avery (Administrator)


    Notes from Mechiel about this project:

    This is the first year I have done a peanut festival princess so I'm not very informed about their tradition. A dominant crop in Floresville, TX is peanuts, hence the harvest time festival.

    High school girls and boys apply through a committee to be royalty in the festival. I have been working with other festivals/coronations in my area for well over 20 yrs. The Order of the Alamo Coronation of the Queen of Fiesta is the main one I work with as well as the Lutheran Coronation and the Waco, TX Cotton Palace festival.

    I made 3 duchesses this year but the event was postponed until next year so I cannot reveal photos of them until April next year.                                                   

    The process starts with the artwork of the Robe, gown and train. I source fabric, jewels and beads to create the design. I have employees 3-5 that work alongside me to accomplish the task in the allotted time, 4-7 months. I usually require 3 fittings for the garment.


  • 11/05/2020 5:01 AM | Megan Avery (Administrator)

    New Virtual Dates Announced: Nov 16-20, 2020

    ATS proved in our first virtual edition nothing can stop us from moving forward and connecting the buyers and suppliers in the textile and apparel market. Over 2000 retailers, brands, manufacturers and professionals attended our last digital event in May. Due to the immense demand for ATS to produce more virtual shows we made a decision to significantly upgrade our virtual platform and announce two more virtual experiences for you this October and November.

    Register Here

    Features include more enhanced live matchmaking, a real virtual booth experience, interactive live text, video and voice chat, a live product demo hall, countless expert-led panels and sessions, downloadable product catalogs and direct links. We understand how much the industry relies on us to bring the globe together, which is why we decided to launch two more editions.

    The ATS November 16-20 event will feature panels and sessions focused on the global supplier and the USA buyer:

    • The USA Presidential election result / potential ripple effects
    • Analysts, economists, influencers and experts will recap 2020 and provide advantages to seek out in 2021
    • China - USA Trade
    • COVID-19

    Both ATS virtual events both will attract attendees and suppliers from all over the world who want to connect with over 200 world class suppliers at each edition. Seminar tracts will be focused on Sourcing, Design and Sustainability with an emphasis on marketing, logistics, fashion, design and trade.

    • Near-sourcing in the western hemisphere & continued sourcing in the far east
    • Benefits of Automation & the affects of COVID-19 on factories
    • Sustainable products & a sustainable workforce
    • Canadian, American, & World perspectives
    Register Here

    Speakers will be industry leaders including:

    • Bob Kirke: Executive Director, Canadian Apparel Federation
    • Julia K. Hughes: President, USFIA
    • Avedis Seferian: CEO, Worldwide Responsible Accredited Production
    • Wilson Zhu: COO, Li & Fung
    • Jeff Streader: CEO, ModCloth

    All ATS international sourcing events provide FREE ACCESS for attendees to meet the top manufacturers of apparel, fabric, home textiles, ready-made garments, accessories and Personal Protective Equipment. PPE is the fastest growing category in the textile & apparel industry and at ATS.


  • 11/03/2020 11:52 AM | Megan Avery (Administrator)

    In April, a friend of mine invited me to help out with the “Lets Breathe” project that her family was starting.  This was a way to get much needed masks to healthcare providers at the beginning of the Pandemic when masks were in short supply.  I decided that it was a good way to help out so I came on board the project. 


    HOW the “Let’s Breathe” project GOT STARTED

    Like many Americans, the Allvin family learned of the critical shortage healthcare providers were experiencing in N95 and surgical masks to help keep them from breathing in or out the coronavirus. Determined to help even while sheltering in place, they launched a quick-start effort on March 21, 2020, to mobilize people in our communities to make and distribute reusable masks to those on the frontlines of the pandemic in urgent need of additional breathing protection.

    In just 3 days, they delivered the first masks – 85, to an assisted living and memory care center in Falls Church, Virginia where two residents had contracted coronavirus. Soon, their growing cadre of family and community volunteers were making dozens, then hundreds of masks per week, sustained by the skilled labor of sewists and the generosity of those donating money to buy materials.  The masks have gone to hospitals, community clinics, nursing homes, home healthcare providers, and rehabilitation centers in northern Virginia, Washington DC, Washington state, and Arizona.

    The formula was simple: They employed easy-to-use online platforms to organize nearby neighbors quickly, raise money easily, and find local healthcare providers who need the masks. They kept the organization lean and "flat," which enabled them to move swiftly and focus our efforts on three basic tasks: (1) find and organize the people to help, (2) secure materials to make the masks, and (3) deliver the finished masks safely and hygienically.

    Almost 28,000 masks were made by 101 volunteers in 6 months.  I made 1788 of them.  By September the need had diminished so they ended the program.  By then, manufacturers had gotten up to speed with a healthy supply of masks.  I was happy to help out with such a worthwhile program while sheltering in place.  


  • 10/26/2020 8:27 AM | Megan Avery (Administrator)

    Hi Everyone - Wanted to take a moment today to introduce myself to the group. 

    I'm Megan Avery, your new VP Of communications. I'm excited to take on this position and I'm really excited to dive a bit deeper into my ASDP membership. I was asked to consider taking on a board position and figured there would be no better way to get to know all of you! And I'm always happy to be of service. 

    I joined ASDP in January of this year after I attended my local chapters weekend retreat. I loved hanging with all the ladies of my NJ Chapter so I decided to make it official. 

    My sewing school in Hoboken NJ is currently called M Avery Designs (I will be changing names in December - if anyone has an advice about changing your business name after being in business for 20+ years, please give me a shout!)

    My studio teaches classes to anyone over the age of 5 how to sew. We have many sewing classes for kids, adults and anyone wanting to learn how to sew. (Even Elsa - see above :)

    Up until March, we taught mobile sewing classes to almost every school in Hudson Country as part of their after school enrichment programs. We also host sewing birthday and bachelorette parties. 

    Since COVID, we've been trying to get by teaching small kids and adult classes in our 650 square foot studio on the third floor of an old Levelor blind factory in Hoboken NJ.

    We've also been ramping up our virtual sewing class offerings and have been enjoying having new sewing students as far away as Israel. 

    I also have another side business called Hipstitch Academy where I coach other people wanting to get started teaching sewing classes. I teach marketing and business strategies for starting, growing and scaling your sewing school. I also create all the curriculum we teach in the studio and sell it to other people teaching sewing classes.

    I'm excited to get to know you all better. Drop a comment below and tell me about what YOU do! 

    Megan Avery
    M Avery Designs Sewing Studio - www.maverydesigns.com
    @maverydesigns

    Hipstitch Academy - www.hipstitch.co
    @hipstitchacademy 


  • 09/24/2020 5:07 AM | Megan Avery (Administrator)

    I was doing to some reading this morning and came across this really interesting report put out by the Strategic Sewing & Quilting Summit about the state of the sewing industry during Covid -19. 

    Here is the interesting overview of the study. It's actually a follow up of a previous report put out mid April.

    Here's the original report.


    Report Overview

    Since our last report, the uncertainty of the future remains, but the pandemic has had a positive impact on our industry. Sales are up. Our industry is being forced to innovate in the digital sales space, and it is expected that it will help all of us. The global pandemic has had a significant impact on global sewing supply chains.

    Brick and Mortar retailers have rebounded a bit since the start of the pandemic. They have adapted with curbside, social distance shopping, and improving and optimizing their digital presence. Yet, they are still hurting without retailer events. Keeping everyone safe with social distancing often requires a higher labor cost. Retailers have reported moving workshops online, through workshops. 

    In our industry, event-based companies are bearing the brunt of the impact in the pandemic economy. With in-person events on hold for the foreseeable future, they have to adapt to the virtual world or they will go out of business. The virtual event has its successes and challenges. It’s great for learning and education, but harder to execute successfully for closing sales.

    In the broader world, businesses reported over and over that a vaccine and/or effective treatment is essential to returning fully to business. There are also comments about the broader impact of the elections and increasing polarization

    Sewing is a bright spot in a dark world. Our biggest challenge is an uncertain future. Our current dedicated consumers are sewing more and many new sewists have arrived with the mask movement. How we keep them sewing is up to us.


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